Wednesday, 26 September 2012

time for tea

Like January, September marks a time for new beginnings.  This September is particularly momentous for me as my baby has just started school.  In turn I was hoping that that meant that I would have hours of time to myself to catch up with the things I've not had time to do over the last 9 years.  Some how this isn't yet the case (not helped by the fact she isn't full time at school until after 1/2 term!).

I am getting slowly back on track though. I managed to find the time and head space to read our oven instructions so I can now use the timer - something my life would have benefitted from years ago.  Leaving the house to do the school run, knowing the oven will turn on itself and having the 'supper-ready' beeper going as I get back 2 hours later with children worn out from swimming is great.  I used it the other day to make this delicious Rosemary cake, a fab Nigella recipe, for a new mum's coffee morning at school.

Anyway I've also decided that it's time to re-visit the resolutions I made in January.  Somehow I've failed to be a prolific blogger yet this year, hopefully that's going to change.  I'm hoping and anticipating waves of time for 'me'.  When it comes hopefully I'll have time to write some more posts, and time to sit down, enjoy and (most importantly) finish a hot cup of tea.

Monday, 24 September 2012

defeated by technology

if you are trying to access our website today we are experiencing some difficulties with our new server.
so we have a temporary site at
we are hoping to be fully back up and running in our normal site in the next 48 hours.
you can also call the studio on 01453 872480 and we will be delighted to help you with samples and orders.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

beautiful places

a little whistle stop tour around france

ile de re

the beautiful town of monflaquin

beynac on the river dordogne

jardins du marqueyssac

sunflowers in the dordogne

zinnias in the loire


Friday, 14 September 2012

its not always perfect!

sometimes a friend calls you up, and you have a phone conversation which leaves you feeling happy for the rest of the day. whenever my friend helen rings i feel like that!  When she rang this week i came off the phone with my jaw aching from laughing from tales of our hols and their hols, one of helens most memorable sayings is " hmmm holidays, kids, same old crap, different location and only half of your stuff!!!!!!"  who could disagree. anyway she pointed out that my holiday pics make it seem life in the hardaker holiday home is all a bed of roses - i only ever put the good bits on here!
so i thought i would share some of the not so good, and somewhat benny hill moments of life!
the first day of our hols, less than 50miles over the channel dotty had a strop, resulting in this

which was accompanied by  a hushed and hissing granny like shout about " i bet you wished you'd bought a ******** caravan" (apparantly not though as a knackered campervan is much cooler!)

life is never dull whenst travelling with my children, the youngest always manages to create mischief wherever he ends up, and ile de re was no exception - face first complete with bike in one of these salt marsh  ditches - sadly no pic as i was too busy pulling him out.
though mummy is no better, wondering what was bobbing up and down in a very stylish spa jacuzzi - turned out it was the chicken fillet padding of my posh new swimming cossie!!!

see its not all perfect in hardaker and pope land (i tell a lie jos life is always beautiful!)
PS , it will be back to the beautiful life tomorrow!

Thursday, 13 September 2012

a proud moment

i have had the pleasure this year of working with the most lovely family, to create some beautiful bespoke fabrics for them.

proving the power of google, my lovely client did a google image search for yellow chinoiserie and up i popped! My lovely client contacted me and between us and our fabulous printers, we managed to pull off a custom colour redecoration of her dining room in time for thanksgiving.

the summer brought the second phase, where i designed a site specific contemporary relaxed damask for their small sitting room. they are a proper family, who live in their house and entertain their friends who come from all corners of the globe to spend the summer, so it was important for them that the designs didn't feel stuffy or over formal.

its heartwarming to deal with such lovely folks,  and i should just mention the marvels of Dr Helen Tilly's  translation skills!!!!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

have ipad will travel

the purchase of dotty has rather revolutionised life in the hardaker household, we have been nipping off here there and everywhere throughout the holidays. Modern technology has meant that i have been able to stay in touch with jo all the time , and she held the fort through my 3 and a half weeks in france. The one downside of modern technology is you end up with boxes of cables and a bag clanking with iPads, iPods, kindles, laptops and other malarchy! after a big scratch on the ipod in st ives in may i fired up the machine and made some covers for the techy stuff to take to france! not only do they prettify the ugly techy things, they do definitely protect them. i tend to cart all of our electrics around in one of my shoppers so am much happier now that they aren't all clanking in to one and other.

with decorex looming and the prospect of catching up with old collecgues and friends, i am for once going to feel like i have joined the 21st century (rather than a country bumpkin which is my usual feeling!) when i whip out my ipad at decorex complete with the decorex app and rather smart sarah hardaker cover!!

if you are coming to see us at the vh fair have a look for our very popular scrap bags before they sell out and make yourself a cover. check out our step by step how to here feb 12

Sunday, 2 September 2012

colours of ile de re

as promised a little more on our trip to france. I felt very inspired by the ile de re, which had a very chilled out vibe and was very relaxed. we heard very few english voices in a week. All of the shutters on the buildings on the island are painted in soft chalky tones.
we had just finished shooting the new collection when we left, and some of the colours we have going on in the new collection are veery redolent of the colours in france (more on colour inspiration later!)
anyway here is a little selection of ile de re, which is making me feel very wistful.....

 everybody cycles everywhere which i also loved because you were n't dodging cars (always a trial with small children in tow).

the streets and cycle paths were overflowing with wild flowers and hollyhocks.

 there are vast expanses of wild marshland and salt flats

beautiful blues of sea and sky